Terry Walton, one of my colleagues here at the CBF Resource Center, is a huge fan of Mardi Gras – probably arising from her years of living in Mobile. Each year, she treats our staff to a Mardi Gras feast – which she calls a “Fais do do.” She prepares an amazing display of foods, including etoufee, jambalaya and gumbo along with collard greens and even beignets, fried on site and dusted with lots of powdered sugar. The tables were adorned with beads and traditional masks. Our staff can be a raucous bunch on such occasions (hard to believe, I am sure) and certainly a good time was had by all with lots of laughter as we enjoyed our feast and being with each other.
This morning, on Ash Wednesday, I am struck by the contrast of mood as we begin the Lenten Journey of the next 40 days.
The prayer below was posted on the Alliance of Baptists newsletter “Connections.” It is a fitting petition as we begin this sober time of reflection and repentance.
Look upon us as we enter these Forty Days bearing the mark of ashes,
and bless our journey through the desert of Lent to the font of rebirth.
May our fasting be hunger for justice; our alms, a making of peace;
our prayer, the chant of humble and grateful hearts.
All that we do and pray is in the name of Jesus.
For in his cross you proclaim your love for ever and ever.
—Catholic Household Blessings and Prayers